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Martial Arts Fusion Workout Popular in L.A.

Mind-body formats are branching out from pure yoga and Pilates workouts to embrace martial arts–workout programs that incorporate yoga and Pilates moves. At L.A.’s Jiva Yoga Studio, Cameron Shayne, yoga instructor and martial artist, has developed a training method he calls Budokon, which combines yoga and martial arts for an invigorating workout. (In Japanese, a budokan is a building where practitioners study the ways of the martial arts.) Gaiam Inc. is now offering this Martial arts workout, Budokon, along with two other workouts, in its new Eastern Practice Programs category of DVDs.

Shayne draws inspiration for his Martial arts workout program from his own background as a black belt in Olympic-style tae kwon do and Okinawan karate-do. He’s also a yoga teacher who cultivated his yogic perspective under Cyndi Lee of Om Yoga and with Ashtanga yoga teachers William and Patti Asad.

The other two programs in Gaiam’s Eastern Practices category are tai chi workouts led by David-Dorian Ross and Qigong (chi kung) exercises with Daisy and Francesco Garripoli. “We have had such great success with our yoga and Pilates programs [that] we knew it was time to take the next step,” said Lynn Powers, president of Gaiam. “[These] programs . . . seem like the next challenge for people who want to be healthy in body, mind and spirit. There’s an energetic component . . . that people are seeking now.”

Shirley Archer-Eichenberger, JD, MA

Shirley Archer, JD, MA, is an internationally acknowledged integrative health and mindfulness specialist, best-selling author of 16 fitness and wellness books translated into multiple languages and sold worldwide, award-winning health journalist, contributing editor to Fitness Journal, media spokesperson, and IDEA's 2008 Fitness Instructor of the Year. She's a 25-year industry veteran and former health and fitness educator at the Stanford Prevention Research Center, who has served on multiple industry committees and co-authored trade books and manuals for ACE, ACSM and YMCA of the USA. She has appeared on TV worldwide and was a featured trainer on America's Next Top Model.

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